I am not my fear. That being said, evolutionarily speaking, fear, or a by-product of it, was probably the first emotion experienced by living organisms.
Nature has demonstrated that negativity bias, leads to better survival outcomes than curiosity (remember what killed the cat ). A negativity bias is a tendency towards seeing danger and being timid and cautious. For example, MRI research shows that old parts of our brain light up when we experience fear. However, the same tests show that newer brain structures actually shut down.
As a result, fear is a powerful conscious and unconscious driver of every part of our being. From behaviors to our immune response, it runs everything. Furthermore, because it’s a distinctly uncomfortable and scary experience, we tend to repress and/or disassociate from fear. This allows it to dictate our life even more.
So How Can You Manage Unconcious Fear?
Both esoteric practices such as yoga and contemporary trauma therapies life Somatic Experiencing encourage the cultivation of a witness consciousness. They promote safety, support and gentle inquiry into our unfamiliar emotions to free us from primal subconscious influences like fear. As one leans into their experiences, both conscious and (previously) subconscious parts, more and more of the positive aspects of human emotion and experience expand and flourish.
In Stress School, we begin with learning about the essential binary of danger and safety. We cover the fear and comfort, that drive the operating system of your brain. Then, we commit to practices that cultivate what Stephen Cope would call the “True Self”. This is the consciousness that you can use to anchor the inquiry into yourself from a place of stability and curiosity. There is a whole lot more to it. However with their True Self, support, and encouragement, anyone can learn to embrace their most repressed and terrifying aspects. It’s the first step to transforming your life.
To learn more about connecting to and understanding your internal states, click here.